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Anthony Wilson-Smith August 28 2000
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Overture

Anthony Wilson-Smith August 28 2000

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@macleans.ca

Anthony Wilson-Smith

Shanda Deziel

Overdone

Defusing an Olympic flag flap

The controversy ignited last week by a Globe and Mail column under Donovan Bailey's byline shows the perils of ghostwritten copy. After kayaker Caroline Brunet was chosen to carry Canada’s flag into the opening ceremonies at the Sydney Olympics, Bailey’s column claimed he turned down an offer to carry the flag because it conflicted with his training schedule. That assertion upset many athletes and Canadian Olympic Association officials because it undermined Brunet’s honour by making her look like a second choice— and it simply wasn’t true. The sprinter was asked by Athletics Canada if he would consider having his name put forward as a candidate—there were 16 in all—to carry the flag. But Bailey

didn’t make the important distinction between being asked to be a candidate, and being the preferred choice, to Brad Robins, a Toronto sports-marketing specialist who writes the column. Robins regrets the wording in the twiceweekly diary, and promised that in Bailey’s next instalment, “we will correct the misunderstanding.”

James Deacon

Who speaks for Shaughnessy?

Members of the Canadian literary community are at crossed swords over a writing award named after late Liberal MP Shaughnessy Cohen. A leaked list of judges for the newly created prize for political writing, to be offered by the Writers’ w Trust, has friends hop55 ping because all three judges are male—and one, John Crosbie, is a Tory. (The others are Peter C. Newman and Ron Graham.) One critic is Mary Clancy, Cohen’s longtime roommate and

caucus colleague. Other critics include caucus chairwoman Dr. Carolyn Bennett, book publisher Jan Walter and MP Roger Gallaway. Says Clancy: “There are scads of qualified women who could have been on that jury.”

Trust officials are defensive. “I find it unworthy of Shaughnessy Cohen,” says John Macfarlane, the trust’s chairman. Officials say some women were shortlisted but were unavailable. Critics are undeterred by that argument. “They’ve got to think about what Shaughnessy was about,” says Clancy. One aspect is appropriate: the feisty Cohen loved a noisy scrap.

Over and Under Achievers

Canada’s team out-Rooted

Live on CBC Newsworld: a clothes store infomercial! The RCMP desserts the PM! And the NHL goes Wild/

^ The RCMP: Redfaced Cops Miss Piethrower. Maybe they should take lessons from Jean Chrétiens alter ego, Eddie Goldenberg, on how to keep people away from PM.

Team Roots: Ceremony naming flagbearer for Olympic ro team is televised live f from clothing store f basement, domi| nated by speeches | from owners. Let the Games begin—without more product placement.

^ The NHL: Sues the Canadian Wildlife Federation because its kids mag, Wild, already uses same name as new Minnesota franchise. Coming next: on behalf of the Montreal Canadiens, the league sues all 31 million citizens.

xj,/ Michael Cowpland: Corel

founder gives up CEO’s tide—but retains large share of company. Sing it: “Meet the new boss, same as the old boss....”

♦ Older men: Don’t sleep well after age 45 and are prone to fat, says study. The good news: go ahead then, drink all the beer you want!

Overview

Survivor 101

Excitement over the CBS series Survivor has been so widespread that even self-declared eggheads are devoted followers. Graham Cook, a doctoral student in sociology at the University of Toronto, recently prepared a list for colleagues on dissertations that could be written about the show (and ways to rationalize watching it):

Anthropology: Tryst Tropique— Colleen, Greg and the Mating Rituals of the Tagi Tribe

Engineering: Bamboo vs. Hardwood in Temporary Shelter Construction-The Case of Pagong

Geography: Two Tribes Become One-Changing Settlement Patterns on PulauTiga

What Ho, Joe?

Ever ponder that chestnut about how “politics makes strange bedfellows”? Consider the Nova Scotia riding of Kings/Hants, where Joe Clark hopes to win a seat in the Sept. 11 byelection.The Liberals aren’t running a candidate as a courtesy gesture. In fact, Liberals say many party members are supporting Clark-in the hope a win will perpetuate the split between the Conservatives and the Canadian Alliance. But some Tories, including much of the Halifax elite, are sitting on their hands, while some local Tories will vote for NDP candidate Kaye Johnson. They’re mad that MP Scott Brison stepped down, and others hope Clark will lose so that another Nova Scotian, House Leader Peter MacKay, will replace him. The Alliance is running businessman Gerry Fulton, best known as a Maritimes tractorpull champion-a pastime that, by comparison, is easy to understand.

History: Nasty, Brutish and Short? Re-examining the Forgotten Lives of Sonja and B.B.

Political Theory: Rousseau’s or Machiavelli’s Natural Man? Rudy as Monad, Richard as the Prince, in Survivor’s “Primitive” Politics

Religious Studies: No Loaves, and Definitely No Fish-Dirk’s Fall and the Challenge to Faith on Survivor’s Island

Women’s Studies: No (Wo)Man is an lsland-“Cows,” Catfights and Sisterhood Survivors

Overbites

“I get Canadian porno—that’s the extent of satellite service and Internet in my house.”

-American musician Kid Rock describes the degree to which his house is wired

“Finally, something positive about Canada.”

-Vanity Fair's preface to a remark by actor Gabriel Mann in which he describes his fondness for Canadian cigarettes. The New York City-based magazine, edited by Canadian expatriate Graydon Carter, frequently mocks Canada.

“I’m getting tired of watching George Washington cross the Delaware and realizing he’s really in Montreal.” -Brent Swift, leader of Hollywood’s Film and Action Committee, complains about the number of American-produced movies shot in Canada

The music book

From Guy Lombardo to Anne Murray to the Tea Party, EMI Music Canada—-formerly Capitol Canada— has signed or distributed some of North Americans favourite recording artists.

In a new book, Fifty Years of Music: The Story of EMI Music Canada, Maclean’s music critic Nicholas Jennings offers a history of the company filled with anecdotes, including this one:

One of Capitol Canada’s first big records was Nat King Cole’s Mona Lisa. The tender ballad, with Cole’s liquid vocals pouring over a velvety backing of lush strings, was big hit in late 1950. When Cole arrived to perform in Toronto for the week of Nov. 13, at the Loew’s Uptown Theatre, Capitol Canadas Ken Kerr greeted him and arranged to book him into a hotel. But for all that Canadians presume a more noble tradition of race relations than the United States, Cole faced a double stan-

dard here: the “finer” establishments in Toronto turned Kerr down. “We wanted to put Cole up at either the Royal York or the King Edward,” recalls Kerr, “but they wouldn’t take him. We wound up having to go to the St. Regis Hotel over on Sherbourne Street, which was a bit of a dump.” Despite that, Cole’s performances were a smash—and he was a forgiving man: he returned to Toronto to perform in 1952, and remained a favourite with Canadian audiences until his death from lung cancer in 1965 at age 45.